Arson Investigators: THE NEW BREED

Issue 6 and Volume 143.

Arson Investigators: THE NEW BREED New York state has a new weapon in its war against arson: the Canine Accelerant Detection Program. Two Labrador retrievers trained to detect minute quantities of flammable and combustible liquids used by arsonists are part of the Department of State’s Office of Fire Prevention and Control’s (OFPC) team of experts who assist local investigators in determining the cause and origin of fires. The program was authorized by New York’s Secretary of State Gail S. Shaffer and State Fire Administrator Francis A. McGarry following a series of meetings between the OFPC and the Atlantic City, New Jersey Police Department (ACPD). As fire investigators in OFPC’s Arson Bureau, we were assigned to work with the canines. Under the direction of Chief Joseph Pasquale, the ACPD organized the first formal accelerant-detection canine training program in the nation. The program was developed and conducted by Sergeant Dennis McSweeney, director…

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